Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Review: Fearless Dark as Midnight

Lindy's Rating: 7.0
Richard's Rating: 6.5
chocolate makerFearless
barDark as Midnight
cacao trees(unknown)
size57g ~ 2.0oz
cocoa solids75%
added fat(none)
sweetenercane sugar
other ingredients(none)
list price$5.99
colormedium-dark brown
PANTONE 19-1015
texturesmooth, not glossy, uneven sheen, raised images, scoring
aromafruit (berry, tropical, raisin, cherry, plum, prune), dairy, earth, floral
snapmedium hard
tastesweet, fruit (berry, raisin, coconut), sour, spice, earth
meltsmooth, but gritty bits
finishsomewhat sour, slightly acidic
Fearless is the largest maker of raw organic chocolate bars. They make bean to bar chocolate with single origin cacao from Brazil. Fearless purchases the cacao through direct trade relationships with family cacao farmers in the Mata-Atlantic rainforest in Bahia, Brazil. During processing, the chocolate is kept below 118 degrees Fahrenheit (48°C). At present, Fearless makes one unflavored chocolate bar and four flavored bars, and plans to add new bars this year.

Dark as Midnight was made from only two ingredients: organic raw cacao and organic unrefined whole-cane sugar (also called rapadura). The chocolate bar was USDA certified organic.

The bar was scored into 17 pieces due to it being shaped as if a bite had been taken from it (which represents the 1% of their profit given to those suggested by their Fearless Champions). One piece of the bar had the raised image of the Fearless elephant and the others had varying raised images of stars reminiscent of Le Petit Prince. The bar came enclosed in a silver plastic wrapper (covered with different colored Fearless elephants) inside a recycled paper box. The best before date printed on the wrapper was 1 November 2013.

The color was a medium-dark brown that was slightly more red than Bracken (PANTONE 19-1015). The surface of the bar was smooth, but not glossy. It had an uneven sheen. The bar had a medium-hard snap.

Dark as Midnight gave off a strong, complex fruity and earthy aroma. The fruit aroma included berry, tropical fruit, raisin, cherry, plum and prune. We also smelled dairy and floral scents.

The taste was sweet, with berry and raisin fruit flavors. Lindy also detected some coconut. The sweet was juxtaposed with sourness, and my attention kept switching between the two. I tasted spice and earth as well.

The chocolate had a generally smooth melt, though on the less smooth side. In addition, there were occasional gritty bits. The length was short, with the chocolate flavor lasting about 10-20 seconds after the chocolate was gone. The aftertaste was initially sweet, and the finish was somewhat sour and slightly acidic.

Overall, Lindy described Dark as Midnight as "the everything chocolate" due to its many fruit scents and flavors, its contrasting sweet and sour taste, and its smooth yet occasionally gritty melt. It was certainly the boldest raw chocolate we've tasted.

You can purchase Dark as Midnight online for $5.99 directly from Fearless or for $5.95 from Chocosphere.

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